By Morgan Ford-Butler, Assistant Director/Instructor, TRS
Spring 2015 was busy for TRS as we spent much of our time in the beautiful town of Columbus, Georgia in late March and early April to provide Swift Water Training in Boat and Flood Operations to the Florida Task Force 2 Regional and FEMA team out of Miami.
Why Columbus, Georgia?
When Brandon received the call from Florida to schedule training, he began looking for a place to “meet in the middle.” As luck (and patience) would have it, research on Google Maps of the Atlanta, Georgia area showed an incredible area with great potential for outstanding training. A quick call to the Columbus Fire Department and a few pictures later, Brandon knew he’d found the perfect spot. With a newly revitalized downtown centered on the Chattahoochee River, the area was praised as the largest urban white water park in the nation. Not too bad, right?
Turned out the location was one of the best sites we had trained on. Our training was divided into three separate sessions that spanned late March and two weeks in April. During each training session, members of the FLTF2 team and Columbus Fire Department, learned boat operations for swift water and flood conditions in Class 3 and 4 rapids on the Chattahoochee.
Students learned the basics in terminology, parts, and tactics in a classroom session on the first day. Day two was spent in the water learning basic boat maneuvering and operations as we worked from flat water to class 3 Rapids. Day three led them to utilizing their skills to work through a scenario based on challenges that would require application of skills that were learned over the past few days.
Florida task force members and Columbus Fire members did not disappoint us. They were quick to apply their new skills in a harsh environment that was as spectacular as dangerous.
We were proud to be selected as their trainer and feel that we met some of the best and brightest of their team members.
For more pictures go to our Flikr Feed > Click Here. (As soon as Flikr fixes their upload issues we will have them posted.)
TRS would like to thank:
- Florida Task Force 2 team for their teamwork, cooperation and enthusiasm.
- Columbus Fire Department for their hospitality and insight of the river.
- The City of Columbus, GA for their cooperation and hospitality.
- Momma Goldberg’s for knowing exactly how to feed large groups of hungry firemen.